A local hospital is discontinuing water births

DEKALB COUNTY — Nearly 200 people plan to protest after DeKalb Medical Center announced last week that it would be discontinuing water births and vaginal breech delivery.

Channel 2’s Erica Byfield interviewed a mother-to-be who is due in three weeks.

Sarah Spicer is now scrambling to figure out an alternative plan because she wants to do a water birth.

She's one of many people affected by the announcement.
Hospital officials have changed their tune a bit on the topic since Byfield contacted them.


The administration initially said there would be no more water births, along with some other procedures.

Now officials are saying that they will honor already approved births.

"She's a very blessed little girl," Spicer said of her expected daughter.

Spicer's baby girl has closet full of clothes waiting for her.

"We have the diaper bag packed," Spicer said.

Spicer planned to have a water birth at DeKalb Medical Center, but she's thinking now that it might be a home birth.

"It's really not what we want to do at this point. It's disappointing. I'm just disappointed in DeKalb Medical in the way that they've handled this," Spicer said.

DeKalb Medical Center social media posts from last week indicate that the health care provider has discontinued water births.

Spicer said she was blindsided.

Her doctor, Dr. Brad Bootstaylor, who runs SeeBaby Midwifery in Midtown, said he was too.

Bootstaylor said he has worked with the hospital for years and hopes to do so in the future.

"I just hope DeKalb Medical realizes that it's impacting a lot of people who are anticipating having a beautiful birth at that facility," he said.

Hospital staff issued a statement on Tuesday:

"DeKalb Medical is conducting a review of the safety information available regarding water births. While this review is in progress, we will discontinue water birth delivery. Some exceptions may be made and we are honoring already approved birth plans. "

Spicer feels betrayed.

"To have the rug pulled out from under our feet by DeKalb Medical, especially in my position this late in the game, God only knows what the women who birthed this weekend had to go through with all this stuff up in the air," she said.